Hot Off The Pressgram

pressgram_switch_posterStop me if you’ve heard this one.

“Honey, I made a Picstagram account so I can share my photos with you! What’s your account?”

“Get with it, mom, no one uses Pictsagram, we use Picbook now!”

It often feels like the day your parents get on a social network, it’s over. And perhaps the problem is not that we’re making too many social networks, but we aren’t happy with the ones we’re using because it doesn’t quite meet our needs, so we make more and more and more accounts, and finally you pick the one that mostly works and deal with it.

Depending on what kind of neurotic you are (there’s a rumor I have tinfoil in my hats) depends on what kind of network you like to use. Me? I like the ones where my data is mine, and even if you’re hosting it, you agree that it’s mine. That means I end up wasting a lot of time coming up with ways to move content from one device or another to the web, and while that’s great for me, it’s not perfect for people who email PDFs of Word Docs for me to post on their blogs. Last time I tried porting from Instagram to my blog, it took a ton of crazy steps (11 as of a year ago).

A year ago, John Saddington felt the same way. He, like me, had issues with the existing social networks owning your data. He wanted this to be easier, he wanted it to be free-er, and he wanted to be profit-less. Well, kind of. I’ll come back to that. John made Pressgram his assault on those other social sites. Free to use, easy to upload from his network to your blog.

How easy? Once you’ve installed, and added your blog to the app, it’s this:

  1. Install plugin on your blog
  2. Take photo and apply filters
  3. Write ‘content’
  4. Click the option for ‘publish to blog’
  5. Publish

Pretty simple.

Now this isn’t to say Pressgram is perfect right off the bat! There are a couple things I’d love to see (like the ability to save new posts as ‘draft’ and maybe skip posting on the social network all together), but those are pretty minor all things considered. And yes, there are some security concerns that have been raised. But this is a day-one product. It’s not even a week old, and it’s run by one-guy. I’d rather trust this one guy with my data than the ‘big dogs’ who are out for the bottom line, personally. Besides, other than the official WordPress app, I can’t think of a single iPhone app that lets you publish straight to your WordPress blog.

Pressgram won’t meet everyone’s needs, and it’s not a silver bullet, but it’s a start in the right direction of free and open social networking, without selling your soul. I’m in!